Château de l’Aumérade ‘Cuvée Marie Christine’ Rosé, Cru Classé Côtes de Provence 2019.
The Château de l’Aumérade is a 400 year old estate located in in the heart of Provence. Originally belonging to the Aumerat family, the traditional Mas property dates back to the Renaissance period. In 1594, the Duke of Sully, Henry VI’s finance minister, presented the Château with a Mulberry tree and Plane trees for their luxurious gardens, for supplying the Royal Court. In 1930, a young Henri Fabre senior and his wife Charlotte, fell in love with the Château de l’Aumérade, with its 300 hectares of estate vineyards and purchased it from the Aumerat family. The Château was designated as a Cru Classé when the Provence appellation was created in 1955, a system classifying the wine estate rather than the vineyard area. It is one of 18 that still remain in the designation. The Château is currently run by Henri Fabre junior and his sister Marie-Christine.
A lovely pale powder pink hue, with refreshing aromas of grapefruit leading to succulent peach and apricot on the palate. Fruit forward and full, with a hint of spice, this elegant rosé has a refreshing acidity and a long finish.
Grapes: Cinsault 35%, Grenache 35%, Syrah 30%
This would pair excellently with herby chicken or simple seafood plates.
Oveja Dry Muscat 2018, Bodegas y Vinedos Fontana.
Bodegas Fontana is a family winery (Cantarero Morales) with over thirty years of experience and tradition that has managed to surprise the industry by placing their wines in a prestigious place in the Spanish wine scene.
Uclés is a wine-producing region in Castilla-La Mancha, central-southern Spain, located north of La Mancha, south of Mondéjar and east of Madrid.
Cencibel (Tempranillo) thrives here and produces both young, fruit-forward wines and more complex oak aged examples.
This young, fresh muscat has fantastic stone fruit flavours backed up by long acidity and a floral nose. Honey, lychee and white grape with a peach and almond tart finish.
Serve this firm favourite alongside spiced fish, dahl or even a cheeseboard.
Picpoul de Pinet 2018, Dom. Font-Mars.
Jean-Baptiste de Clock runs this estate (much older than the wine’s modern label suggests) close to Mèze and makes very fine Picpoul.
The passion of winegrower and wine-producer is an old tradition for the family de Clock. Originally from Holland, Jean Clock settled in Bordeaux in 1679, and decided to cultivate a vineyard in that region. As a result King Louis the XIV, who recognized the quality of his wines, naturalized him as a French citizen in 1686. In his lineage, Jean-Baptiste-Alexandre was ennobled in 1757 by Great Counsellor of the King (Conseiller Grand Secrétaire du Roi). Leon de Clock married Camille de Vulliod and like numerous generations of winegrowers before him, he undertook the management of the vineyard and the domaine. “Le Château Font-Mars” (The Castle of Font-Mars) is situated on the property at Mèze.
Since 1864 until today the property was managed by the ancestors of Camille (Privat, Allié, Guibert, de Vulliod). Jean-Baptiste de Clock, their youngest son, is now the owner and perpetuates both family traditions.
The vineyards cover 55 hectares and the terroir containes three different kins of soil: pliocène marin in the south, river formation in the west along the river Negue-Vaques, bégudo Rognacien, clay-chalk type in the Northeast.
Thanks to this genealogy and the terroir, their Picpoul de Pinet is a world apart from the often quite bland mass-produced versions made by the big co-operatives. Fossilised dinosaur eggs turn up in the limestone and clay vineyard soils from time to time.
The grapes are hand-picked at night when it’s coolest before being kept in stainless steel and bottled the following Spring.
This Picpoul is clean, lemony, taut and very dry but with an underlying depth and richness.
Match this Picpoul with oysters or fruits de mer, or just enjoy it by the glass!
Bourgogne Blanc ‘Terroir Noble’, Vincent Girardin 2017.
Vincent Girardin exists today as one of the smaller Burgundy negociant houses, owning 13 hectares of prime vineyards with contracts to buy high-quality fruit from another 85 hectares, many of which they have direct control over. The result is an impressive range of very well made wines from a number of Burgundy’s best villages.
Their Bourgogne Blanc is, thanks to Burgundy’s strict vineyard classifications, something of a bargain as the fruit is all sourced from Puligny, Chassagne and Meursault (hence ‘Terroir Noble’) but it can’t be known by any of these famous names. The quality of the fruit however speaks for itself and this is a very elegant, focussed example of Cote de Beaune Chardonnay.
This wine is dry and fresh with fruit of yellow apples and almonds as well as a nuanced mineral tone. Discreet underlying tone of oak barrel gives the wine a nice texture and balances both the intensity of the fruit and the fresh fruit acid.
Pair with rich fish dishes, roast fowl and lighter meats in buttery sauces
Pinot Noir Domaine Bruno Sorg, 2018, Alsace, France.
This is the source of some of the finest, richest and most concentrated wines in Alsace.
Founded by Bruno & Renee Sorg in 1965, with the wines now being made by their son Francois, this is a tiny producer who produces a range of wines of staggering quality – that they remain virtually unknown can only be due to the fact the family are not natural self-publicists, and production is tiny.
Bruno spent 30 years secretly buying parcels of land and he and his son Francois realised a dream ten years ago with the final purchase of a plot of steep garrigue in the heart of the Grand Cru Pfersigberg. This great vineyard is planted with Gewurztraminer and Pinot Gris and the fruit was used for the first time in 2004.
In 2004 Francois Sorg built a temperature controlled winery just outside the village. Francois says he now has time to think instead of climbing up and down ladders and stairs. The wines were always first division but now they have that extra dimension.
Nose filled with summer berries, cherries & spicy aromas reflected in the a beautifully balanced palate, soft tannins. Elegance personified
Grapes: Pinot Noir
Pair with lean beef and chicken dishes, dishes with mushrooms and truffles, rabbit dishes and cold cuts of meat
Malvasia Nera ‘Talo’ 2017, San Marzano, Puglia, Italy
In 1962, 19 vine growers from San Marzano whose families had farmed the land for generations, combined their efforts to establish ‘Cantine San Marzano’.
Through the decades this cooperative has grown significantly, attracting over 1,200 vine growers. Using modern and technologically advanced vinification techniques they produce elegant wines that pay homage to the ancient Apulian wine traditions. The fusion of time honoured tradition, passion and contemporary techniques, enables this winery to produce wines with distinctive varietal and regional characteristics while reflecting the local terroir. In the Sommelier Wine Awards, San Marzano was awarded European Producer of the Year 2017.
An intense and complex bouquet of ripe red fruits combined with hints of spice. A full-bodied wine with delicious flavours of Morello cherry, thyme and vanilla notes through to a smooth finish. Huge bang for buck!
Grapes: Malvasia Nera
Pair with meaty in tomato sauce, most classically wild boar. For the summer a great match with any char grilled meat dishes – or char grilled Mediterranean vegetables such as aubergine, peppers, courgette.